Sunday, February 27, 2005

posted by James - 6:06 PM

The 2005 Oscars are tonight... 7:30 pm CST on ABC, if you're scoring at home.

Last year's Oscars were a highlight of 2004 for me with Lord of the Rings: Return of the King sweeping all of their nominations.

Tonight the field isn't so one sided. In fact, the polygonal representation of this year's Oscar categories would be a trapezoid, if it were anything.

And with Chris Rock hosting, there's sure to be controversy before they start handing out the awards.

Here's who I think will win with a secondary choice (which is often who I think should win).

Supporting Actor
Winner: Thomas Haden Church, Sideways
Runner-up: Morgan Freeman, Million Dollar Baby
My Thoughts: It would be about damn time for Freeman. I still can't believe he didn't win for Shawshank Redemption, but I love that the Academy didn't shy away from Sideways and Ned, you know who I'm talking about, deserves to get his comedic props.

Supporting Actress
Winner: Cate Blanchett, The Aviator
Runner-up: Natalie Portman, Closer
My Thoughts: Hey, I can't deny Amidala... "You will vote for Natalie Portman"... but I think Blanchett helps avoid another shutout for a Scorsese movie (Gangs of New York), if he doesn't do it himself.

Foriegn Language Film
Winner: Yeah, right. How long did it take you to question my sanity? Only major categories in this post, please.

Winner: Clint Eastwood, Million Dollar Baby
Runner-up: Jamie Foxx, Ray
My Thoughts: Let's see... Don Cheadle is incredibly underrated and probably deserves this award. Johnny Depp and Lenardo DiCaprio are incredibly overrated and probably still deserve this award. Clint Eastwood is just plain incredible.

And Jamie Foxx is incredibly screwed in both categories for his career-changing performances in Ray and Collateral.

Winner: Hilary Swank, Million Dollar Baby
Runner-up: Kate Winslet, Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind
My Thoughts: The last time Swank won, her acceptance speech made more headlines than her performance. Winslet could fix this problem for us by keeping her off the stage by virtue of her performance in the quirky film with the long name. I'm still not sure what Jim Carrey has to do to get more recognition for his performances of late.

Winner: Clint Eastwood, Million Dollar Baby
Runner-up: Marti.... not this time (I hope I wake up tomorrow besides my wife and not a horse's head. heh.)
Runner-up: Alexander Payne, Sideways
My Thoughts: If old hands Eastwood and Scorsese find a way to cancel each other out, I think Payne has an excellent chance to take this and the Adapted Screenplay categories. This movie doesn't have the momentum of Million Dollar Baby and the Aviator will win more awards, but I'd be shocked to see it completely shutout.

Animated Feature
Winner: The Incredibles
Runner-up: Shrek 2
My Thoughts: If Shrek 2 winning foreshadows a later event, I'm alright with that. What's the point of this award if Pixar wins it every year?

Motion Picture
Winner: Million Dollar Baby
Runner-up: Sideways
My Thoughts: Ok, even I know the real runner up will be the Aviator, if it doesn't win, but I'm stumping for Sideways with absolutely no shame. It wouldn't surprise me if this category breaks the tie between Million Dollar Baby and the Aviator as far as total Oscars go.

This Oscars will have a much more contentious nature, and I'm looking forward to the tributes to Johnny Carson, etc., but just like last year there will be a major highlight for me.

Original Song
Winner: "Accidentally in Love", Shrek 2, Music by Adam Duritz, Charles Gillingham, Jim Bogios, David Immergluck, Matthew Malley and David Bryson; Lyrics by Adam Durtz and Daniel Vickrey.
Runner-up: "A Bunch of Loser Songs", A Bunch of Loser Movies, Music by a Bunch of Loser Musicians; Lyrics by a Bunch of Loser Songwriters
My Thoughts: If my Counting Crows don't win this award, I'm seriously boycotting next year's awards. The highlight of this year's awards will be seeing the Counting Crows perform the best song they've written in years.

This will also be a fitting tribute to bassist Matt Malley, who "quit" the band recently. I don't know if he'll be there tonight, but I'll be thinking about him the whole time. He signed my ticket from the first Counting Crows show I ever saw way back in 1997 at the Paramount Theatre in Seattle.

It was by total chance he was exiting the theatre as my parents and I walked past on our way to the ferry. I thought it was cool just to shake his hand, but he offered to sign my ticket as well.

He's powered a lot of the soundtrack of my life ("Mr. Jones", "Round Here", "Recovering the Satellites", etc.), and I'll miss the little guy.

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